Nancy Wilson's talents shone in many different performing circumstances, but in front of a live audience she really came alive -- singing to the people, to say it simply (think of Sammy Davis, Jr.). Unsurprisingly, The Nancy Wilson Show!, recorded at the Cocoanut Grove, is one of her better original LPs. Wilson's approach to performance was quite different from her many excellent contemporaries; instead of emphasizing standards delivered in continual series of vocal jazz interpretations, she sang songs that could be presented as stories, whether they were purely humorous (the self-deprecating "Don't Talk, Just Sing," written specifically for her) or sarcastic ("Guess Who I Saw Today") or more dramatic ("You Can Have Him"). The close accompaniment by her rhythm section and Freddy Martin's orchestra accentuates the emotions in each song, and it's easy to laugh along with the crowd at such an entertaining performance.
AllMusic Review by John Bush